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The '100 Most Influential African Women' List for 2023 Launches, Celebrating Women Spearheading Impact Across Africa

Avance Media, a pan-African Public Relations and Rating firm, has announced the release of its fifth annual edition of the 100 Most Influential African Women list for 2023 honouring Africa’s foremost women leaders from 31 countries.

Chosen for their exceptional contributions to various sectors on the continent, the 2023 publication features 20 business leaders, 24 diplomats, 6 climate change leaders, 21 leaders in CSO & Philanthropy and others in notable categories such as governance, media, sports and entertainment.

Prince Akpah, the Founder of Avance Media, emphasized that the compilation aims to spotlight women spearheading impactful initiatives across Africa, serving as inspiring role models for the next generation. He underscored their selection as a tribute to their extraordinary accomplishments, positioning them as exemplary trailblazers among Africa’s female leaders.

Criteria for selection included: Excellence in Leadership & Performance, Personal accomplishments, Commitment to sharing knowledge, Breaking the Status Quo and being an accomplished African Woman.

The 2023 list features female presidents and vice presidents, H.E Sahle-Work Zewde (Ethiopia), H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan (Tanzania), H.E Mariam Chabi Talata (Benin), H.E Mutale Nalumango (Zambia),H.E. Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior (South Sudan) and Simi Nwogugu( Nigeria)

The comprehensive profiles of the 2023 100 Most Influential African Women can be accessed at

Below is the list of Avance Media’s 2023 100 Most Influential African Women arranged in alphabetical order:

  1. Abir Ibrahim || Associate Director of Africa, World Economic Forum

  2. Ahunna Eziakonwa || Regional Director for Africa, UNDP

  3. Alice Wairimu Nderitu || Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, UN

  4. Amani Abou-Zeid (H.E.) ||  Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, AU

  5. Amina J Mohammed (H.E.) || Deputy Secretary-General , United Nations

  6. Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh || Strategic Partnership Lead for Africa, Microsoft

  7. Angélique Kidjo || Musician

  8. Antoinette Sayeh || Deputy Managing Director, IMF

  9. Arunma Oteh || Chairperson, Royal African Society

  10. Aya Chebbi || Founder, Nala Feminist Collective

  11. Beatrice Agyeman Abbey || Group CEO, Media General

  12. Bimbo Ademoye || Actress

  13. Bintou Keita  || Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the DRC, UN

  14. Caroline Wanga || CEO, Essence

  15. Charlene Ruto || Founder, Smachs Foundation

  16. Chido Cleopatra Mpemba || Youth Envoy, African Union

  17. Chileshe Kapwepwe || General Secretary, COMESA

  18. Clementine Nkweta-Salami || Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, UN

  19. Coumba Sow || Representative and Country Director in Rwanda & Djinouti, FAO

  20. Dagmawit Girmay Berhane || Member, International Olympic Committee 

  21. Damilola Ogunbiyi || Co-Chair, UN-Energy

  22. Danai Nhando || Country Director, South Africa

  23. Déborah Mutund || TV Host, CANAL+ Group

  24. Degan Ali || Executive Director, Adeso

  25. Diariétou Gaye   || Vice President People and Culture, World Bank

  26. Diene Keita || Deputy Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund

  27. Elizabeth Maruma Mrema (H.E) || Deputy Executive Director, UNEP

  28. Elizabeth Wathuti || Founder, Green Generation Initiative

  29. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (H.E.) || Founder, EJS Center

  30. Fatim Cissé || CEO, IHS Towers CI

  31. Fatima Kyari Mohammed (H.E) || Permanent Observer to the United Nations, AU

  32. Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura || Secretary General, FIFA

  33. Folasade Alli (Dr.) || Chief Medical Director, Lagos Executive Cardiovascular Centre

  34. Françoise Moudouthe || CEO, African Women’s Development Fund

  35. Françoise Remarck || Minister of Culture, Ivory Coast

  36. Graça Machel || Founder, Graça Machel Trust

  37. Hanan Morsy || Chief Economist, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

  38. Hanna Serwaa Tetteh (H.E.) || Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, United Nations

  39. Hilda Bassey || Chef, Myfood By Hilda Baci

  40. Ibukun Awosika (Dr.) || CEO, The Chair Centre Group

  41. Ineza Umuhoza Grace || CEO, The Green Protector

  42. Irene Koki Mutungi || Captain, Kenya Airways

  43. Jacqueline Asiimwe || CEO, CivSource Africa

  44. Jessica Dewhurst || CEO, Justice Desk Africa

  45. Libianca || Musician

  46. Leila Bouamatou (Dr.) || Managing Director, Générale de Banque de Mauritanie

  47. Louise Mushikiwabo (H.E.) || SG, Organisation internationale de la Francophonie

  48. Lydia Nsekera || Member, International Olympic Committee 

  49. Mariam Chabi Talata (H.E) || Vice President, Republic of Benin

  50. Martha Ama A. Pobee (H.E.) || Assistant Secretary-General for Africa, UN

  51. Martha Koome || Chief Justice, Kenya

  52. Matshidiso Moeti (Dr.) || Regional Director, World Health Organisation Africa

  53. Mavis Owusu-Gyamfi || Executive Vice President, African Center for Economic Transformation

  54. Mimi Kalinda || CEO, Africa Communications Media Group

  55. Monique Nsanzabaganwa (H.E. Dr.) || Deputy Chairperson, African Union

  56. Mukwandi Chibesakunda || CEO, Zambia National Commercial Bank

  57. Mutale Nalumango (H.E.) || Vice President, Zambia

  58. Nangula Nelulu Uaandja || CEO, Namibia Investment Promotion and Development Board

  59. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala || Director General, World Trade Organisation

  60. Noluthando Gosa || CEO, Akhona Group

  61. Nonkululeko Nyembezi-Heita || Chairperson, Standard Bank Group 

  62. Nozipho Tshabalala || CEO, The Conversation Strategists

  63. Ojoma Ochai || Managing Director, Co-Creation Hub

  64. Olori Atuwatse III (HRH) || Queen Consort, Warri Kingdom

  65. Oulie Keita (Dr.) || Executive Director, Greenpeace Africa

  66. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (Dr.) || Board Chair, Women Deliver

  67. Precious Moloi-Motsepe (Dr.) || CEO, Motsepe Foundation

  68. Proscovia Nabbanja || CEO, Uganda National Oil Company

  69. Prudence Ngwenya || Director of Women, Gender and Youth, African Union

  70. Racey Muchilwa || PRESIDENT & HEAD, Novartis Sub-Saharan Africa

  71. Rasha Kelej (Senator Dr.) || CEO, Merck Foundation

  72. Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior (H.E.) || Vice President, South Sudan

  73. Roselinda Tuya || Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Forestry, 

  74. Ruth Kadiri || Actress

  75. Ruvheneko Parirenyatwa || TV & Radio Host

  76. Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila (Rt. Hon) || Prime Minister, Namibia

  77. Sahle-Work Zewde (H.E) || President , Ethiopia

  78. Salima Mukansanga || Referee, FIFA

  79. Samia Suluhu Hassan (H.E) || President, Tanzania

  80. Samira Bawumia (H.E.) || Second Lady & Founder, AFRIWOCC

  81. Samukeliso Dube (Dr.) || Executive Director, FP2030

  82. Sanda Ojiambo || Assistant Secretary-General, United Nations Global Compact

  83. Sara Menker || CEO, Gro Intelligence

  84. Simi Nwogugu || CEO, Junior Achievement Africa

  85. Solange Amichia || CEO, CEPICI

  86. Somachi Chris-Asoluka || CEO, The Tony Elumelu Foundation

  87. Stigmata Tenga (Dr.) || Executive Director, Africa Philanthropy Network

  88. Thembi Seete || Actress

  89. Theo Sowa || Co-Chair, The Equality Fund

  90. Theresa Ayoade || CEO, Charterhouse

  91. Tulia Ackson (Hon Dr.) || Speaker, National Assembly of Tanzania

  92. Tusaiwe Munkhondya  || Founder, YANA

  93. Valentine Rugwabiza || Special Representative of the SG for the CAR, United Nations

  94. Vanessa Nakate || Climate Activist & Goodwill Ambassador, Unicef

  95. Vera Songwe (Dr.) || Founder & Chairwoman, Liquidity and Sustainability Facility

  96. Victoria Kwakwa || Regional Vice President for Eastern and Southern Africa, World Bank

  97. Wendy Lucas-Bull || Chairperson, Shoprite Holdings Ltd

  98. Winnie Byanyima || Executive Director, UNAIDS

  99. Zainab Hawa Bangura (H.E.) || Director General, United Nations Office at Nairobi

  100. Zouera Youssoufou || CEO, Aliko Dangote Foundation



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